The arrow had whizzed by Florence's ear too close for comfort, and he flinched and jigged in alarm. The broken-legged damsel behind him appeared not to appreciate his chivalry. But at least she had revealed the giant spider was already dead, already dead. She appeared wily, independent, smart. He turned back to look at her. THAT close? his eyes said, his hand still protectively over his ear.
Approaching respectfully, Celtar spoke to the elf. "Hello Sir. Is there any assistance I can provide you?" he asked while trying to assess the man before him...
Florence turned to see the arcanists gather. They would undoubtably conspire, for good or for worse. He'd seen Celtar around Kelabras before, circling in wizardly circles. Then a voice rang out, echoing through the caverns.
"Greetings citizens. My name is Fhaora Songsteel. Iomedae be praised that we survived what just happened. It seems that the forces of darkness have broken free once again. Fear not, we have fought them back before and we will do it again. If anyone needs assistance, please just ask."
Just another idealistic crusader likely to die in the Worldwound, Florence thought initially. He'd seen more than his share.
But her message hit home. The silver dragon protector of Kenabres was dead. War might even be raging above in the city this very moment, the battle between demon and dragon being only the first wave, a potential second wave hoards of Abyssal terror swarming the city. Florence shrugged mirthlessly at Songsteel's implication that Iomedae be praised in thanks for their survival. Florence placed little stock in the gods, despite his own childhood experience. That was different. It was natural selection and sheer luck that any of them lived, he realized as he surveyed the dead body parts protruding everywhere from the rubble. Survival of the fittest, and dumb luck. Yet Songsteel had rallied the shaken group with bold and protective words. He was grateful for that. Who knew what was to come. It would take their combined efforts to find their way out of this hole alive. Florence glanced up into the shadows of the ceiling of the cavern. Might it collapse at any moment, especially if a battle raged in Kenabres above, killing them all and Songsteel's hopes with it?
Florence had yet to speak, now listening and studying the dynamic of the blind elf and the wealthy Horgus Gwerm, the word gold capturing his attention. Keep your friends close, and the wealthy closer. Florence would make sure to gain Gwerm's good favor, but before he spoke, the broken-legged woman behind him did. He appreciated her efforts to distract the elf - an oft snooty race - and Master Gwerm, dispelling their unnecessary rabble. Meanwhile Florence scoured the ceiling again, this time with his eyes in search of more spiders. Spiders could creep and climb and yo-yo up and down thin strands of their strong webs, slinking silently down from above to drop upon unsuspecting prey.
“Hey, what’s that?”
Silver dragon scales. A voice deep inside Florence seemed to impart secret powers as he touched each of them as he and the broken-legged woman picked them from the rubble. He was fascinated. Florence said nothing, nor did the broken-legged woman. Yet somehow Songsteel knew the powers of the scales, and was the first to stake her claim of one. He then wondered if perhaps this miracle of survival and the dragon scales was truly Iomedae's work. Songsteel seemed a paladin, in attire, demeanor and claim. Then Florence's brow darkened. Songsteel's actions spoke otherwise. True paladins could heal it was said, yet Songsteel could do nothing for the woman's leg, merely tossing her a dragon scale instead. Florence leaned suspicious of Songsteel and her claims. More likely, she was no paladin, but a petty thief or cultist or demon in disguise. He would watch her actions closely. She had taken for herself the most sacred of the scales, and stowed it away where one would have to get by her sword to take it. If Florence was a demon planning to entrap them all to their doom, that's exactly what he would do.
"Mistress Anevia, I should be able to set your leg and I have some mystical healing I could offer..."
It was Celtar who came and knew what to do for...Anevia - that was her name. The arcanist seemed genuinely kind and helpful, and carried a kit of gauze and splints to aid the damsel's leg.
"Mistress Anevia, it is," Florence said with a bow and wink, attempting to distract her from the pain of Celtar's configuring of her leg. "I am sure good Celtar here will do his utmost to help you with your injury," he reassured. "You're pain will surely lessen and your ability to walk improve quickly." Florence didn't know if what he was saying was true for certain, but it seemed like the right thing to say. Hope and morale were powerful allies. "I am Florence Nightingale, at your service. And thanks to you, Celtar," Florence added. "I have heard of your kindness."
Florence was dreamily enraptured at the approach of Evelyn Morninglory. This woman - no, she was no ordinary woman. Angel-touched she was, and was known to Florence, though she did not likely know him. Her presence was reassuring. Once she began assisting Celtar, Florence took a step back at the power of Evelyn's presence, entranced by her eyes, though he tried not to show it. Gods at work or no, she was here. He remained silent, partly out of awe.
Without keeping a dragon scale for himself, even the one that resonated strongly with him, Florence's fearless curiosity took him. Why was the spider dead? The question gnawed at him. It had not been crushed by rubble. From this distance, it did not appear it had been torn apart by some demon or dragon. Anevia's well-placed arrow might have slain it, but again, it had already been dead. It was unlikely the spider had died of old age. That would be too strange of a coincidence. Today was already strange enough.
Florence looked over at the one woman who had not yet spoke. He knew not who she was, but she wore leafed armor and her bow was zeroed on the spider, her eyes keenly studying it still. Florence gave a small whistle in her direction as he came a bit closer to her, enough to let her know by his body language that he intended to inspect the spider.
"I am Florence Nightingale, lovely mistress," he said to her. "You are wise to keep your attention on the spider. There may be something suspicious about its death, or it could be nothing. I will inspect it closer. Cover me with your bow, if you will, milady," he requested respectfully and charmingly. He kept his voice low in the echoey cavern.
Florence slipped a long thin rapier from its sheathe, and dared to carefully approach the large dead thing. He spied around and searched, using the tip of his rapier to sift about spindly-haired legs and bulbous protrusions of black disgust.
Perception check on ceiling for clues of its stability and to spot for any more spiders. d20+5= 21.
Diplomacy with Anevia d20+2= 15.
Florence makes a roll to try and determine the cause of the spider's death (wounds, burns, etc.) and look for any other clues or items around it...
Perception (search) check d20+5= nat 20 for 25!
Last edited by Bong Bellowsmoke; 03-14-2015 at 01:49 PM.
The Red Condor shrieked at Sir Darvig in full wrath. Wings flapped storms of fire across the sky. "The Mage-God grows in power swifter than it appears to Paladine. This I know. A warning," Sargonnas told Darvigl, "for you to give to Paladine in your prayers."
“I will,” Darvig uttered.